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Sharks at Flames: Lines, gamethread, and where to watch

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Huge game for Calgary and, therefore, the world.

Joe Pavelski is haunted by the ghost of American goal scoring's future.
Joe Pavelski is haunted by the ghost of American goal scoring's future.
Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

The San Jose Sharks (38-23-9, 2nd Pacific) continue their three game, four night, whirlwind tour of Western Canada with a visit to the Saddledome to face the Calgary Flames (35-26-10, 5th Pacific). The Flames are red hot (sorry, I won't do that again) right now, with a 3-1-1 record in their last five, and a six game stretch of divisional opponents on tap for their desperate push into the playoff race. They're three points behind the Dallas Stars however for the second Western wild card spot in the West and four behind the Los Angeles Kings for third in the Pacific, so they'll need every point they can scrounge up.

Adding injury to insult, Calgary's second leading scorer Matthew Tkachuk will miss his second straight game with a lower body injury. The addition of Kris Versteeg to the lineup after missing 49 games with a hip injury will help, but won't fill the void left by Tkachuk's absence. Still, the Flames skated to a 1-0 affair against the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday, missing winger be damned, so they're still a dangerous team with everything to play for. With a point in that game, Johnny Hockey to his friends, Gaudreau to the rest of us, hit 80 points, good enough for eighth in the NHL, 11 points behind Tampa's Nikita Kucherov for the league lead.

The Sharks come into tonight's game off of a win over the very same Oilers, theirs a 4-3 win in over time Wednesday night, coming out on top of a game in which they never led and didn't look altogether like they wanted to. Still two points is worth the same every night, and it went a long way towards solidifying San Jose's perch (not) atop the division. Also sitting on a decent recent record, they're 5-2-0 in their last seven, and currently one point ahead of the Kings with a game in hand and three over the Ducks.

Joe Pavelski's ten points (three goals) in seven games stretch could be in jeopardy, as his currently most effective wingers' absence at today's morning skate gives reason for pause. Both Joonas Donskoi and Evander Kane were absent from the day's festivities. While Donskoi has been ruled out for tonight's game, he has not been sent back to San Jose, which bodes well for the Finn (and for us). Kane has been classified as a game-time decision, which is an even better sign.

If the Sharks can keep the Flames' top ridiculous six off the board, and somehow solve Mike Smith for the first time in franchise friggin' history, they may be able to further solidify their position down the stretch tonight.

Sharks Lines

Evander Kane -- Joe Pavelski -- Jannik Hansen

Tomas Hertl -- Logan Couture -- Mikkel Boedker

Timo Meier -- Chris Tierney -- Kevin Labanc

Barclay Goodrow -- Eric Fehr -- Melker Karlsson

Joakim Ryan -- Brent Burns

Marc-Edouard Vlasic -- Justin Braun

Brenden Dillon -- Dylan DeMelo

Martin Jones

Aaron Dell

Scratched: Paul Martin, Marcus Sorensen

Injured: Joel Ward (shoulder), Joe Thornton (knee), Joonas Donskoi (upper body)

Flames Lines

Johnny Gaudreau -- Sean Monahan -- Micheal Ferland

Sam Bennett -- Mikael Backlund -- Michael Frolik

Kris Versteeg -- Mark Jankowski -- Garnet Hathaway

Troy Brouwer -- Matt Stajan -- Curtis Lazar

Dougie Hamilton -- Mark Giordano

TJ Brodie -- Travis Hamonic

Brett Kulak -- Michael Stone

Mike Smith

David Rittich

Scratched: Nick Shore, Chris Stewart, Tanner Glass, Matt Bartkowski

Injured: Matthew Tkachuk (upper body), Marek Hrivik (upper body)

Where to watch

Broadcast: NBCSCA, SNW

Stream: NHL.tv / NHL App

Radio: 98.5 KFOX / NHL App / Sharks App